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he year 2012 has brought many changes to Westside High School. All of the new Freshman are very excited to finally be in high school and have a lot to say. Not only are there new students, but Westside High School has gotten a new principal since the last school year, Ms. Stewart. With all these special changes, The Howler has dedicated an exclusive section for “The News.”


Kate Grobowsky

Staff Writer

Mittens or Llamas? would be an appropriate title. No Coke or Pepsi? room for a woman to choose, no Life presents so many hard choices, room to marry whom you please, but since we aren’t 12-year-old no room for Ohio voters to hit the girls let’s just stick to the important polls on the Saturday before elecdecision: domesticated felines and tion day. fuzzy, spitting monsters. Someone go get the giant bag of Or politics. I get those confused. catnip. Seriously though, Overlord Mittens. Former Governor MitMittens could be bold and fierce, if tens. Our “Great Overlord Mittens” he is elected next month. More on page 7

By Brandy


Staff Writer

Who is Rita Ora? and has become Rita Ora is a 21 a fashion icon year old British worldwide. singer/songwriter Rita Ora’s music is and actress signed pop with a mix of by Rapper Jay Z jazz and r&b. to Roc Nation. She began singShe just recently ing at a young released her debut age and her first album Ora which chance at stardom went number was appearing in a one in the United British film called Kingdom. Spivs. The common Shortly after, she people may have began writing heard of Rita Ora music, releasing being on tour with mixtapes, and Coldplay or feafeaturing in many turing on a track hot artists’ with Drake or also songs which lead Tinchy Stryder. to her discovery She’s also known by Jay Z. Her new for her hip sense singles “Hot Right of fashion Now”, More on page 2

“R.I.P” and “How Do We (Party)” have America noticing the new artist’s talents. Her new album features artists from Kanye West to Stargate. Anyone with a keen ear for music would love her.

2012 VMA Full Results

PSY on Howler 10 TV

Westside Students Discuss MTV VMA Awards By Ashley


Cleburn Staff Writer

n important event in pop culture recently was the Video Music Awards viewed by many Westside students this August. “I love watching the VMA’s,” junior Diandra Vargas said. “Sometimes I discover music on there or a great artist I might wanna check out if they win an award for a good video.” The night was full of performances from great artists. Two that stood out included Rihanna’s performance with A$AP Rocky to their new song, “Cockiness”, the style, lights and music all showed us a slightly risqué and very exciting side to “Ri-Ri”. Another was Frank Ocean’s touching, soft, and soulful performance to his much-loved song, “Thinking About You.” “I have always liked A$AP and Rihanna’s music, plus their collab Cockiness is a great song,”

Shante, you stay! You thought America’s Next Top Model was television gold? I hand to you on a silver platter RuPaul’s Drag Race. The best drag queens in the country compete to be crowned the queen.They work their fierceness in two

challenges and a runway walk, because girl those heels are fabulous and how can you not work it everyday up there to the majestic sound of RuPaul’s best hits? May the best queen win, but for now just sashay away!

Now I know what you’re thinking: Purity Ring? I’m not into that kind of stuff (or hey, maybe you are!). In any case, Purity Ring isn’t actually what it sounds like. The music itself, made by James Roddick, can be described as eerie and hypnotising, with Megan James’ enchanting lyrics to match. An interesting

Vargas said, “but when I saw their performance, there was so much going on, I just couldn’t get enough.” The night was also full of shocking celebrity dish. The biggest item was when we learned that Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose are pregnant with their first child. There has been no word yet on the couple’s due date, though while Khalifa was presenting the award for best new artist he announced that in only six short months baby Khalifa-Rose would arrive. Kevin Hart as the host also had several things to say to his audience. In the beginning of the show he had quite the introduction. Hart’s controversial opener focused on conflict in the world of celebrities including: the brawl between musicians Drake and Chris Brown, the scandal between Kristen Stewart and another one of “Snow White and the Huntsman’s” crew

She’s not even a person, she’s a fish. Alana Thomson is Honey Boo Boo Child. Armed with her gay pig glitzy and a mouth full of sketti, she is taking over your TV, so ya’ll better redneckognize. TLC, home of

fact about the band is that they managed to produce this album while being nearly 800 miles away from each other. The only time they did get together to work on the album was to do the finishing touches.If you are into weird, eerie, pop-ish music, you should definitely check out Purity Ring.

quality televised entertainment, gives us an inside look at the class-filled every day life of Honey Boo Boo and her beautimous family, doing what they do best, leading a flawless existence.

members and even Frank Ocean’s coming out regarding his sexuality. The big screen displayed many shocked, and even inflamed, celeb faces during Kevin Hart’s commentary of these incidents. “Kevin always has something to say, but he had some serious guts for all that,” junior Tori Satchebell said. “Drake and everyone were looking pretty annoyed.” One Direction had the most VMA awards with three, while Chris Brown and M.I.A followed, each having received two. Rihanna won Video of the Year for the video, “We Found Love” One Direction’s video for “What Makes You Beautiful” won two for Best New Artist and Best Pop Video. “I cannot believe One Direction got so much attention,” Satchebell said. “I thought Frank really deserved an award that night.” If you haven’t heard the song “Gangnam Style” yet, you’re missing out on some serious entertainment. The song is sung by Korean rapper PSY (in Korean of course). The song is simply hilarious. In it, PSY does a hilarious dance move which resembles him riding an imaginary horse. It might interest you to know that PSY was signed by Scooter Braun, who also signed Justin Bieber. Don’t like Justin Bieber? Well, then you might be interested in knowing that the song is based on the Gangnam district, “a luxurious and trendy area of Seoul, which is a capital of South Korea,”

and is “associated with an elegant lifestyle.” In any case, you should definitely check out the

For those of you who are into the mix of country and pop, or just like Taylor Swift in particular, you may or may not know by now that she’s getting ready to release a new album, titled Red, on October 22nd. After writing all of the lyrics on her last album, Speak Now, by herself, she decided to co-write this album with several different songwriters, including “Adele collaborator Dan

Wilson,” reports Rolling Stone’s Patrick Doyle. The first single released from the album was “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.” If you’re used to Taylor Swift’s usual feel, you’re in for a bit of a surprise with this new song. It features more of a hint of hip-hop than country, and is certainly a change from her usual music.

music video on youtube when you get the chance. It will certainly make you laugh, at least a bit, at its outrageous nature. My rating - 4.0

Obama’s Official Site

Romney’s Official Site

A Quick Glance at Major Party Candidates HEALTHCARE TAXES

Mitt Romney: Put a new health care system in place. It would involve lower taxpaying rates for upper middle class and wealthy citizens.

Mitt Romney: Taxes will be lowered and welfare will be raised for the poor. Barack Obama: Taxes will be lowered for working class and higher for wealthy.

Barack Obama : Continue Obama Care, which includes cheaper health care for the working class and keeping the taxes of higher income citizens more than those of less income.


ABORTION Mitt Romney: Abortion should be illegal despite the cause of birth.

Mitt Romney: Taxes will be lowered and welfare will be raised for the poor.

Barack Obama: Abortion should be legal and the choice of women despite the cause of birth.

Barack Obama: Taxes will be lowered for working class and higher for wealthy.

Kate Taylor is ready to vote in November By Madison


Q: How did you get into politics? A: My mom was a government teacher for 18 years, and I grew up in a really strong liberal household, though I would have been liberal even if I grew up in a republican household. Q: Who are you planning to vote for in the upcoming election? A: Obama, though I would like to vote for a third party if there was a chance that one would win. Q: Would you consider yourself either a Democrat or a Republican? A: I consider myself a Democrat, but more left-minded than the typical democrat. Q: What specific issues are leading you to vote for Obama? A: That’s a toughie, I agree with a lot of his policies. I personally love Obamacare because I think it’s SO important for everyone to have

Staff Writer

health care. I also really like his stance on the environment and his funding for green energy, and think we really need to be focusing on alternative energy right now. I personally have no issues with taxes because they help our country thrive and pay our teachers, so I like his stance on keeping taxes in place and having taxes staggered based on income- the way it should be in my opinion. I think he does care about teachers and I like that he is fighting to improve education also. Another issue that’s really important to me that Obama supports is gay marriage. Obama is right to keep religion out of politics and the issue of gay marriage really is a human rights issue. It’s going to be something that we look back at one day and feel ashamed about if we don’t do something about it soon, and it’s not the government’s place to decide who the people love or get mar-

ried to- it’s a natural right. Q: Is there one issue you agree with most? A:I guess I what agree with most is Obamacare; nobody should be without healthcare. Or green energy... it’s a tie between those two. Q: So are you excited about being able to vote for the first time? A: SO excited! I love that I turned 18 on an election year. It’s so cool to have a voice and actually have a say in what I want, it really makes it a special year, and finalizes the fact that I’m an “adult” now officially, which is really cool. I think one of the biggest issues young people face these days is trying to find their voice because so many older people think we don’t know what we’re talking about. I think it’s really exciting to be able to participate in the upcoming election, and I’m really enjoying keeping up with the campaign.

Left: Nick Sheppard, senior, shows off his patriotism by wearing his stars and stripes.

Right: Seniors, Matt Taylor (left) and Kate Taylor (right) are voting in the upcoming election, Tuesday, November 6th, 2012.

Left: Nick Sheppard, senior, plans on voting this November, along with an estimated 41 million other 18-20 year olds.

TRIVIA QUIZ New School Year

Westside Band

A New Era at Westside


fter observing the students and the deans for the first couple of weeks at Westside High school, Ms. Stewart said she looked at what things are working and what things are not working. Her goals are to refine the communication in the community by send-

ing parents numerous notifications about what is going on during the school year via email, text message, and other forms of electronic media. She said she also intends to change some of the policies. For example, currently students have to have a hall pass to attend turtorials during lunch. She is not totally against the idea of allowing students to attend tutorials during lunch without a pass, but she wants to observe more before she makes a final decision. Stewart said she is not going to make any changes overnight and if students show an inability to be responsible or take advantage of the current rules, then she will make changes to stop it.

Byars Staff Writers Nicholas Marshi By Bryce

Her overall goal is to define Westside as a 21st century school by increasing communication and technology. She said her biggest challenge is to reach out and help every single kid at Westside to improve the school academically. Stewart has two sons, Brandon and Quinn. Brandon is a senior at Westside High School and Quinn is currently an 8th grader at West Briar and will attend Westside next year. She served previously as a dean at Westside and the process for her return was not a simple one. As the Principal of Kolter Elementary, she had to apply for the Westside job when it became available. She faced a committee of 25 people during the interview and screening process. The committee

comprised members of the PTO, faculty and administrators. Needless to say, Stewart emerged as the ideal candidate. Above all, Stewart said she expects 100 percent effort from students all year long. Her goals and expectations are empowering for students because the students control what privileges they get to keep. A new principal could easily come in and change pretty much everything and be completely justified. Stewart is fair by allowing students to keep the routine and privileges that they are used to - at least until students show her that we can’t handle the responsibility that comes with these privileges. We encourage all students to welcome Stewart back to Westside. She is here for us, so help her help us by following her lead. Take pride in your campus and your new principal.

New Students are Joining so Westside High Sch

At a school with so many optio clubs to find new friends and l clubs that Westside students atten school and community a

Gay-Straight Alliance Meets every Wednesday at Lunch 11:15am - 12:05pm Their goal is to generate a more acceptin community for varying sexual orientation inside the walls of Westside High School

National Honor Society The first and third monday at lunch of every month Students are given the oppurtunity to join in a letter at the end of the sophomore year. The students aim to be examples that represent Westside High school in our community.

S Students Student the Student nize and the avera

Online Math Help

A Fresh Start for a Freshman By Molly


Staff Writer

There are a lot of different ingredients that go into the recipe of people, each piece seasoning, in different ways. A dash of despair. A pinch of perfection. A cup of chaos. The little bits and pieces of events that occur during peoples’ lives manipulate the way they act, think, change, and make decisions. Stella Moger, a freshman, moved from a life filled with private school; she broke free from all of the confinements, restrictions, and started to enjoy the freedoms that were introduced at Westside high school. Engulfed in the feelings that the anonymity that Westside can provide, Moger decides to become more involved and interested in new things. She’s initiating a future. kickstarting things, things that are different here in public school. Things like new freedoms. New clubs. New friends.

New ideas. She loves the sense of being a part of something. The idea of community, and choosing what and who you want to be. She lives by her favorite quote by Benjamin Franklin, it says, “Either write something worth reading, or do something worth writing.” And Moger definitely tries to do just that. Her passion is writing, and she writes what many people believe to be worth reading. She’s won several contests, and thinks of it as a way to escape the real world. As a child, she had a rough time. Writing was an escape from the fact that everything sucked...writing is one thing that she’s adapted as her consistent act of greatness. She sprinkles wishes like salt at the end of a warm, prepared meal. The wish to be thinner. To be smarter. That her Mom had never died. The wish to become something. Something great.

SAT prep & Study Skills

EXPECTATIONS Freshman Senior -Shannon Brice: The Dances

-Annie Haynes: As a freshman, I went to the homecoming dance. I had pretty high expectations. Well, it didn’t quite live up to the hype. I haven’t gone to another dance since.

-Irma Bustos: Pride

-Mary Sou: I would say that being on pride is the best thing that i have participated in in high school. I get something to look forward to everyday and i get to be with some of the sweetest girls in school.

-Stella Moger: The freedom of public school, making my own choices, and finding out who I am.

-Mayra Rodriguez: Learn how to balance your extracurricular activities with your academics because if you don’t, you could easily fail out of a class. Has happened to me before with theatre and soccer at the same time.

ome of the Many clubs that hool has to Offer

ons, it’s hard to pick out the more promising learn. These are the top five most populated nd on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to make the a better place with a promising future.

ng ns l.

Ecology Club Meets every Thursday after School 3:15pm - 4:30pm They strive to make the environment more sustainable as a community by recycling and advocating green techniques.

Student Council s that are interested in Council should talk to eir year’s sponser Council works to orgaarange most aspects of age students yearly activities

Rally Pack It’s too late in the football season to join rally pack but yearly recruiting happens at the end of each year. These rally packer’s goals are to pep up the sports teams and students before and during games.

-Katey Qualls: It’s -Leah Hirtriter: just hope the rest only going to get harder of high school is as fun as it is now.

Teen Forum World Events & Politics

QUIZ Politics

Candidates Gone Wild Kate Grobowsky Staff Writer

By Continued from page 1


mean just look at his running mate. White, male, Christian, GOP Congressman. I shall never have the guts of this brave man whose unorthodox choice of Paul Ryan shocked the world. My dear Mittens, you are a born, strong leader. This is exactly what America needs. The only thing that could be more powerful than Mittens’ valiant decision making is, of course, Obama’s generosity. Thanks to the whistleblowing campaign strategy of his opposers, we now know that Obama’s gay agenda has no one’s best interest in mind. Mittens recently asked during a campaign speech what Obama possibly could mean with his agenda to “Force Gay Marriage Upon America.” Maybe next week he will accuse Obama of actually scheduling gay marriages or running a homosexual dating service. “YOU get a gay husband and YOU get a gay husband!” the president could boast. Everyone check under your chairs because your new gay spouse might be there waiting for you. In all seriousness, Mittens is not the only flawless candidate in this race. We’ve also got President Obama. Let the merciless party of criticism continue. Obama. What a fortunate name. Fortunate for me anyways, because it rhymes with llama. Obama Llama. Excellent. Mr. Obama Llama, aside from his (often criticized and potentially crippling) generosity, has enlightened us. We now know that we did not build our businesses ourselves, and thus shouldn’t be bothered with taking credit for their success.

Thank you, kind sir. I was not aware that Apple actually manages that cookie shop down the road because they use a MacBook to track their financial records. Not that Apple should take any credit either, a politician invented the internet after all. And don’t forget those businesses that receive shipments from overseas. They owe the ocean, or possibly an obscure department the Obama administration, their pride for that unpayable debt. The President’s biggest strength (and for some his biggest red flag) is his smooth talking ways. Obama Llama uses that golden voice to sell high action (READ: expensive) programs to the public. The head llama himself has confirmed his hypnotic ability with a story showing just how powerful those recorded campaign messages are. In this instance, the president was introduced to a young boy and the boy’s parents asked if the boy knew who this man was. The boy confirmed that the man was, in fact, Obama. The parent’s then asked if the boy knew what Obama did. The boy pondered for a minute before saying, “He approves this message.” So that’s what he does. Huh, never would have known. Now that you have the balanced and fair opinion from the mostly trusted name in satirical commentary for the two presidential candidates, you can go forth, make your choice and vote. Or you could, like many people, just sit at home and grumble about whoever is winning at the moment. XOXO Gossip Kate

Obama Gets a Tally By Madison


Connect the Dots to Your Candidate of Choice in 2012


Staff Writer

hen asked how long he’s been interested in politics, Senior Nick Sheppard replied that he didn’t know much about politics until the summer after his sophomore year, and has now been following it for two years. Nick says what motivated him to get into politics is the power that it holds over his personal life, such as policies on education. By getting into politics, he says, he can do something to affect policy-makers, and have his voice be heard. Nick has been keeping up with the candidates very well, and says that if he were able to vote in the upcom-

“ Mittens or

Obama Llama (incumbent)

I think one of the biggest issues young people face these days is trying to find their voice because so many older people think we don’t know what we’re talking about.” -Senior Kate Tayloring election, he’d vote for Obama, because he’s “a decent person.” In all seriousness, Nick cares about helping people who can’t help themselves, and believes sexual orientation, color, and race shouldn’t be things that matter as opposed to who a person is. He also believes women’s rights shouldn’t be up for debate. Nick considers himself a democrat, but not strictly, and says that if you take the contrapositive of the Republican platform, those are his ideas. He thinks Obama’s tax codes are more efficient towards the middle class, and he agrees with Obama’s stance on college funding, because if Mitt Romney was to be elected, there would most likely be an increase in tuition. Since Nick is going to College next year, this is an issue that hits close to home. All in all, Nick says that a good test of a good president is whether or not you would want to sit down and have a drink with them, and just be able to talk to them. He believes Obama fits this description, and that is the encompassing reason he would give Obama his vote if he were able to vote.

Westside Athletic Booster Club

Freshmen By Ashley


Volleyball Season Stats

Athletes Howl

Bosarge Staff Writer

reshman team football player Christopher Butos is indeed enjoying his first year here at Westside High School. Butos is playing a Rover for Westside’s defense. “I started this year out with football because my baseball coach suggested we play a fall sport to be ready for baseball season later on in the year.” Butos said. This was not a coincidence, however, because football is now one of his favorite sports. Aside from, overcoming his obstacle of not being able to tackle as well as he could, Butos believes he will get the hang of everything and continue to play. “Our team’s pregame ritual is when we bow our heads, pray that we have a good game, that no one gets injured, that we play hard, and that we win!” He hasn’t gotten to play very much yet because he is just started out but he is already relieved that high school sports is more organized and to the point than middle school. However, when he’s not staring at a board full of x’s and o’s, Butos is focusing his full attention on school. “Education is a big time number one priority for me,” Butos said. “But when I’m not at school I I like to hang out with my friends, just chill, toss the football around a little, play xbox, and play with my chocolate lab Max.” “My favorite subjects in school right now are Algebra and Biology.” Butos said. He is planning on attending Ole Miss University in Mississippi because his

father attended and his sister currently attends. Until then, Butos will continue to excel through school and sports to become successful in life the way that he wants to.

By Brittany


Gilpin Staff Writer

here’s a hidden story behind every player on the court. Usually people would think someone plays a sport to pass time away, or to be involved with the school, or because they love the sport. That is not the case for this freshman. Many people may not know Mariah Stringer, but she is hoping to be involved in plenty of sports at Westside. She specifically mentioned basketball, soccer, and also softball in addition to volleyball. She is not your ordinary freshman! Mariah was in 8th grade in a small middle school last year. This year she is in a whole new environment. She said in high school the teachers make the work fun and exciting, which is something they did not do in middle school. That being said, she doesn’t enjoy getting bullied and rundown in the

hallways by the upperclassmen. She said, overall, high school has not been as nerve-racking as she thought it would be. “High School really isn’t that bad,” Stringer said. “I thought it was going to be like High School Musical.” Her friends say that Stringer is very outgoing, hilarious, and is outspoken. Her mind often lingers onto things far more serious than a typical high school freshman. Her main goal is to make her mom proud. “My mom influenced me to play because she thought it would be good for me; she is really nice to me but she’s going through things,” Stringer says. “My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer recently and I want to play to make her proud.” Stringer said she wasn’t aware of her mom’s disease because her family members kept her from knowing. She said they thought she might be too sensitive. The day she found

out started like any normal day until she noticed that everyone in her house was in her mom’s bedroom. “Everyone went into the room and closed the door behind them,” Stringer said. “I wasn’t allowed in the room but of course I wanted to know what was going on behind closed doors, so I listened through the door.” “I overheard them talking about how she had breast cancer and I opened the door and began to cry. Then they told me everything that was going on,” she added. Stringer said she is very confident that her mom is strong enough to fight cancer. She explained that her mom is the sweetest person she knows and that bad things always happen to good people, but she knows her mom is going to be a fighter. By the way Stringer plays on the court, it is clear that she is playing her hardest to be the best player she can for her mom.


ar in the West was the home of the runaway. Precariously placed at the edge of the cliffside, his abode, on a clear cast day, gained him a vantage point to admire the entire West in one broad stroke of the eye. Perfect for an old marksman. Perfect for an Outcast. Raiders and treasure seekers could be spotted on the horizon as sure as sunset. The Outcast would scope in with his beloved rifle, standing vigil as a sentinel does, but never opening fire, only keeping guard as their numbers dwindled and multiplied, moving to and fro on the sandy hillsides. Never coming close enough. Never finding his home. Time had been removed from the equation. The endless desolation at every angle brought a strong sense of foreboding eternity. The sky and the desert ran parallel in their everlasting span. This place, the West, had become the true epoch of emptiness. If the question presented itself to the Outcast regarding how long he had resided in the hard wastes (and that is if he were finally dis-

By Joseph


Staff Writer

covered) he would respond cold, and sharp, bringing the fact of his life and leaving no room for discussion. “Too long,” he would say.

upon him like a harsh sickness. Suddenly, his hands were in motion, flinging back the bolt of the rifle and loading in a shot with furious speed.

It had truly been too long. Though the silence would finally be interrupted. Where the usual scavengers made their appearance, a new silhouette appeared. The marksman’s scope honed in with speed, examining the mysterious stranger’s motions. The stranger did not turn, and did not tarry. His smooth pace was headed directly for the shack. The Outcast’s first instinct came

His senses tightened as the target came into an easy focus. He could feel the itch of his finger as it came around the trigger, preparing to squeeze. The stranger kept his stride, until he reached a clear expanse of flat land leading to the old shack. He was too close. He would discover the old marksman. But the Outcast released his trig-

ger finger. Impossible, he thought to himself. Now the stranger was no longer a silhouette, but a full portrait of a man. His jet black hair ran down right above his shoulders, almost touching the duster coat he wore tightly around his person. The brown duster opened up at his waist, revealing a belt buckle with an unrecognizable symbol engraved at the head. Only one thing stood out to the marksman. In a holster at his waist, was something the Outcast could not believe. Another gun. There were no guns in the West. The marksman’s very own rifle, kept intact over the years, was the only one he had seen in a generation. The scope continued to trail the target even as it came to a complete halt. The stranger stood for a moment, scanning the area between the shack and around it. His hands came down slowly to his hips where the revolver sat holstered. Then in a lightning motion, the revolver was pointed at the sky, and the air broke before it. A deafening cannon-like sound filled the ears of the Outcast.

The Westside Howler  

A forum for student news and expression for Westside High School in Houston, Texas.